More than just paper clips

Brittany Hong

Packing my backpack and stepping outside of my front door, I imagined the beautiful campuses that I would be walking across for the next six years of my life. I was the most excited anyone could be, and I was confident that my enthusiasm would never vanish.

About thirty minutes into the first class, I felt the excited butterflies gradually disappear and turn into feelings intimidation from the syllabus, the literal stacks of homework and the outspoken, intelligent peers sitting next to me.

Pasta saved me. As soon as I stepped into the cafeteria, I felt the warmth of the food and realized that maybe I can survive in this new environment. With the small bowl of pasta in my hands, I proudly took out my shiny student ID card from my pocket and purchased my first meal at Harvard-Westlake and exited the cafeteria, smiling.

Eighth, ninth, tenth, eleventh grade passed.

Right now, I am a second-semester senior, attempting to write this column. As I am sitting in my bed with ice cream in one hand, I’m recalling my first day at this school.

Currently, I realize that my exit from the cafeteria is the extent of what I remember from that day. However, I know that Harvard-Westlake has shaped me in a special way.

Little by little, I faced the intimidation and used that to grow into who I am today. I challenged myself to join the school publication, and was not only able to be part of the wonderful Chronicle staff, but also to express my opinion through writing. I challenged myself to take difficult classes and even run for prefect council a grand total of three times, which I do not regret at all.

I have been nominated by the senior class as “least changed since 7th grade.” Yes, I do look exactly the same. However, I have grown as a student, friend, and peer, and I must mention that I have grown at least five inches tall.

Placing down my backpack at the end of my first day here seems just like yesterday. However, my last day at this school is just around the corner. I am thankful for everything that this school has given me and I truly believe that our senior class has linked together into a great Class of 2018.

So before I type another cheesy remark, I will end with something that only the senior class will understand. Combine the first letters of each paragraph of this article.